Jul 11, 2018
Drinking and socializing – Izakaya culture in Japan
I have been studying in Japan for almost 10 month and I found how drinking plays a large role in socializing in Japanese society. The legal drinking age in Japan is 20 years old. This explains why most of the Japanese people start drinking outside when they are in the 2nd or 3rd year of their university life. University students loves to gather together with their friends after clubs or circles (サークル) activities in izakayas.
Izakaya Tenkuni is one of the YNU students’ favorite drinking place in Wadamachi, which is just a 15 minutes’ walk from YNU (Yokohama National University). It is cheap and student-friendly environment attracts many students. It offers space up to 100 people and it is often fully booked during the season of freshmen welcome party, shinkanki (新歓期).
Interview with the owner of Izakaya Tenkuni – Mr. Hoshi
Mr. Hoshi has been running this business since 1991, and he has observed the change in drinking culture of students for almost three decades. He shared us with many interesting stories and difficulties he went through. He told us at the beginning he had no idea about how to run a business of izakaya. He changed his business approaches throughout the time. Finally, he found that he loves to watch those active and lively students drinking in his place so he reformed his izakaya to be more suitable for students’ gatherings (宴会).
Interesting food in Izakaya Tenkuni
I got a chance to taste the exciting “fried fog” in the first page of Tenkuni’s menu. It is also famous for its fish cuisine, such as sashimi. Lastly, it is my personal favorite “fried chicken”.